Part 4
There Are Other Ways


There Is Another Way
Daniel Soto

Instead of insulting each other,
Instead of arguing with each other,
And instead of fighting each other,
There is another way.

Instead of shooting each other,
Instead of cutting each other,
And instead of killing each other,
There is another way.

We can talk to each other.
We can help each other.
And, we can even ignore each other.
There are other ways.

Can we talk it over?
Can't we resolve this another way?
Remember, there's always another way.


Dream Loss
Kanhai John

People sometimes laugh.
They sometimes cry
But when the moment is overwhelming;
they run and do crazy things.

I'm standing here without a dream.
For now that's the way it seems.

Things may not always appear to be good.
As my mother used to say:
"Boy, do the best you could."
Yet I'm still standing here without a dream.
That's the way it seems.

People's words are like a fire
that cannot be quenched by water.
They will make you give up hope;
always quarreling with each other.



Ricardo Brown

Light up my eyes with love.
Only you;
I value
each day with you.



Adrian Marche

I know I come to school to learn to read.
I am free to read anything.
New students come to school every day.
They must learn their school work.
They must be in class every day.



Expressing Myself
Pedro Quinones

I write on paper
to express how I feel.
Nothing is a fairy tale.
Everything's for real.
I talk about things
that I go through.
I put it together,
step by step, for you.
Basically, it's understandable.
Sometimes it might be too much
for you to handle.
I sit in the dark
with a lit candle
to light my thoughts.
Then I go deep in the mind
with feelings from the heart
to combine strong poems.
That's pure Art.

Through My Window
Maria Uroos


Through my window
I feel like I am special
'cause I have seen a lot of stars
more than anybody has ever seen.
I could see another world
the world I have never seen.

All the way up on the thirty-fifth floor
I could see Central Park
covered with whipped cream
or yellow dressing.
I feel great.

The moon comes close to me, but
the world downstairs goes further away.
It is so unusual.
All the stars, moon, sun, clouds and planets
are like kids - and the sky is their mother.
If they don't show up the skies look so dull
through my window.


Heavens In You
Eddie Rivera

The colors so bright
in the heavens so true.
The heavens I speak of
exist within you.
The hell that surrounds you
does not have to be.
Look deep in your soul.
Let the heavens free.

Victor Cordova

    A dark day in the Bronx starts at night. Chaos and murder begin in the savage land I am from. Dead bodies in the alley, brains on the sidewalks. The concrete absorbs the blood from the bodies. After the gunshots police sirens start to sound. Evil is what controls the dark and the moon brings out the killers who thirst for blood. I come from a world of animals who hunt after dark in the Bronx...
    Warm is when the sun hits my face on a cold day. Warm is when I get hugs from loved ones around me. Warm is when smoke from fire hits your body and face on the inside and outside. Warm is extreme and deadly coming from a dragon's mouth. These are warm thoughts coming from me...
    Life is when animals and people are born. Life is being able to move around, not being frozen in time. Life is breathing and feeling and being at peace with yourself. Life is something you cannot play with because you can lose it...
Climbing the hill to reach the crown of life that God is giving. Only the chosen one can have it. A person who has wisdom and compassion and righteous soul shall receive the crown of life. God sits on the throne on top of the hill waiting for the right one to step up, so far no one has succeeded...
    Three days ago I was contemplating people's characteristics: the way they interact with each other and I found it amusing. Ignorance and arrogance seems to proceed and follow most young and older people today in our society. My finger is pointing at young people in general. They listen to rap music, watch gangster movies, and want to portray the same role - like smoking and drinking. They think it makes them look big, but from my perspective they look small. I just hope they open their eyes before their lives and souls fade away.


Eating Healthy In The 90's
P. McLean

    Today, many people are not thinking about the fat and the ingredients that we find in food. Many people like to order all kinds of meat with hot sauce. Occasionally, we'll find ourselves in a grocery store just looking for what we want to gorge on. Then, in the middle of the night, we wake up from our sleep and head straight for the refrigerator. Not a good idea.
    Whether it's a piece of chicken or a fruit, we have to stop putting just anything in our mouths. Try a carrot or a celery stick or even an apple. What we want to do is focus on the balanced diet.
    Now, right away, people get all tied up in a knot when they hear the word, "diet." Dieting doesn't always mean that you should measure the amount of food you put in your tummy.
    As the weather changes, and it's time to put away that overcoat and put on something a little bit more loose and comfortable, we start to cry over how much weight we've gained the past year. Then we go to the gym and want a miracle to be performed.
    But, if we start now, and get the jump on things, we will live a long and healthy life, and look good for years to come.


My First Visit
To My Grandparents' Home

Joy Bogart

    I was born in a very big city, but I love to live in rural areas. I just want to stand there for hours to look at the vast fields which lie before me. I particularly remember some fond memories of my childhood.
    I remember when I was six years old, the very first time I went to visit my grandparents who live in Phu-Hoa-Dong in the rural area of Vietnam. It was very early on a Saturday morning. My mom woke me up and told me that we would go to visit my grandparents. I was so excited and a hundred questions came to my mind; like, "Where do my grandparents live?" "What does it look like?" "What do they have over there?" My mom told me to be quiet or we would go back home.
    We had run over thousands of rice fields. Oh, what a fragrance of the spike came from the field! It just gave off such a wonderful fragrance in the air. The car stopped by a red brick house. "Are my grandparents in front of thouse over there?" I was asking myself. "Yes," I thought so. I jumped out of the car and ran over to them. They were feeding the farm animals. I just loved to watch. I thought it was fun to do.
    My grandparents used to wake up very early in the morning by the rooster's voice, before sunrise. I loved to go to the field with them. There were a lot of people out there to work; and the kids had fun taking care of the buffaloes. People sang to each other all the popular songs. Sometimes they worked late at night. When the moon was full they worked very hard, but they all lived very happily!
    I just fell in love with the people and the fields. They enjoyed all the aromas of the fields and absorbed all the fresh air of rural countrysides.


Hector L. Cedeno

Friend, you were always there,
even if I sometimes was more than
you could bear.

You stood beside me. We stuck it through.
But friend, most of all, you were you.

You helped me to grow. You helped me learn.
Yet, you never asked for a thing in return.

The fun, the pain, the laughter and the tears;
these memories I'll cherish for all my years.

Friend, we did it. We made it through.
But, friend, I'd be nothing without you!

Life Or Art?
Victor Corporan

    I'm writing of teenage art. When I say teenage art I mean graffiti. I don't know why people think of it as garbage. Graffiti is a type of arat, which we as teenagers use to express our feelings. Feelings of hate or happiness; that's how we stop ourselves from hurting other people. And, when we write on the wall, people don't give us a chance to explain what graffiti is all about; so they think of it as violence. Nevertheless, it is not violence. If they give us a wall, we would show them what graffiti is all about. Then they would understand.


Tropical Islands Around Me
Donald Groom

Walking across the beaches,
my mind casts off
like a late night ship leaving for heaven.
My feet feel refreshed
like I never walked a day in my life.
Passion lays within the heart
and explains why we are here.
Listen to the waves.
They are talking to the land that equals man,
"Try, try, try. Please try to save what's here:
Beautiful plants, flowers, water, land."
As my mind floods with great waterfalls,
on high spirits shine brightly between the spaces.


Your Troubles Can Be Lifted
Ada Hernandez

Your troubles can be lifted
although just for a while.
It gives you time to live.

Your troubles can be lifted
if you try and if you believe,
regardless of how many.

Your troubles can be lifted.
Your time on earth is limited.
But, just try your best.
Just believe and you will receive
this gift of peace and serenity.

You troubles can be lifted.
They won't last forever.
Just remember God loves you and us, all.
Misery may upset you,
but time is an illusion,
and soon it will get better.
Just believe and someday.....
Your troubles will be lifted.


When I Grew Up
Monica J. Montanez

    My name is Monica. I am sixteen years old. I was born and raised in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Here as a child I was faced with many problems, such as peer pressure to join gangs, and coping with deaths of friends and family members on a daily basis.
    One of the many problems I have faced was joining a gang for protection. It's frightening when you're only twelve years old, and you get a gun or knife pushed up against your head forcing you to do things you don't want to do. Most of the people in my community lived in fear. Children ran to and from school dreading the thought that they might not even make it. As a result, they resorted to gangs and violence for protection.
    The second major problem faced in my community is death. Throughout the years, I've seen many deaths caused by drug overdoses, sexually transmitted diseases, such as AIDS, and drive by shootings. People in my neighborhood saw life as if they were behind bars. There 's no freedom; you always have to hide, and it isn't safe raising a family there.
    Things have really gotten bad in the Lower East Side throughout the years. No one is in the spirit anymore; no one ever puts up decorations. People are too afraid to send their children trick or treating because kids are always shot or missing. As for Christmas, no one really puts their trees up. As far as I'm concerned, the only days celebrated are the ones when candles are lit for our loved ones that have passed away.
    Life out there was a struggle. Some say it is survival of the fittest, and only the strong survive. In staying strong, I've managed to change my life style and ways of thinking. Otherwise, I wouldn't have made it to see today. I'm glad I didn't become another statistic from the ghetto.


'Cause I'm Free.........Free Falling
Rachel Sirak

Cold steel arms
and short brown hair
tickle my long pale arms.
I taste his love,
but cannot see it.
He calls me Miss,
though I know he loves me.
Locked in my freedom.
I no longer know who I am.
I wish day after day that I could climb the tallest barrier.
My heart leading me;
she hears and feels the voices
and someday will follow.
One day I will crack the rock of freedom.
Yo no se.
My windows hear my cry;
crying to be free,
free from the man I love.


Keep Your Eyez On The Prize
Mimi Woods

You never think of anything bad happening to you; until it does. You wonder why it has happened. What's the reason? What's the cause?

No one can answer your repeating questions; no one can interpret your mind. I wonder if anyone can tell what's wrong with me. Are there any signs?

I called myself an AIDS volunteer; lending an extra hand. Now people consider me a role-model - a true image of a wonderful man.

My great skills of leadership and community outreach shone throughout my peers. But being stuck by an infected needle gushed out all of my fears.

How could this happen to me; being infected by a killer disease? Would someone tell me the answer to the unknown cure, please?

A hero before is a hero no more. All of my talented blessed skills have walked out the door.

As my mind dies, my body begins to do the same. Maybe this is an illusion, some kind of wicked game.

I wanted to die right there and then, for I thought all my loved ones did not care.

But my mom told me through the pain in her cries, "Don't worry baby. Pray to God and keep your eyes on the prize."

And when I realized my mission was not only to suffer but to make others realize, that's when I began to write a poem, "Keep Your Eyez On The Prize."

I began to make it my duty to make others aware, that people with AIDS have feelings; they care.

And even if their life is shortened and time seems so important.......

Remember that they are still humans until the death bell rings; until the day Jesus comes with chariots and songs angels sing.

Too bad I couldn't see my poem get published because last night my death bell rang; and life on earth is unfortunately finished. It's done.

But I want you to remember me as a person who fulfilled all dreams; life never turns out the way it seems.

And even though I died at the age of 17, I still received a wonderful gift; which was to keep my eyes on the prize!!


Changing My Life Around
Darnell Smith

Don't wanna stop the hands of time,
just wanna slow them down.
Can't seem to find enough of it
to change my life around.
I wanna change my life around,
but to my suffering there's no end.
Happy days seem to have left me lonely.
For my heart there's no one to tend.
I wanna make a change
for the better of those around me;
for the better of myself;
and the better of my family.
I wanna make a change.
I'm looking to start anew;
for the better of whom I can be;
for the better of me and you.
My past seems to haunt me,
constantly pulling me down,
and for the better of my future,
I need to change my life around.


Antonia Sarris

Do dreams really come true?
I don't know, that's why I'm asking you.
Are dreams just things we see when we sleep
or do they have meanings, answers to seek?
Some dreams are good.
Some dreams are bad.
Some dreams are happy.
Some dreams are sad.
But some dreams do come true
You want to know why?
Because I have you.


R.I.P. Uncle Carl
Dwight Keaton

When I was 12 years old
my uncle
had made a bike.
He put
all his time & effort
into this bike.
He finally finished
after spending months
& hundreds of dollars.
This bike was like his car.
It was the best bike
I have ever seen.
Every time you heard the bike's horn
it was like a train
pulling into a station.
I'd get very excited
whenever he'd come
with his bike.
When I was 13
my uncle passed away.
He had left his bike behind
with no one to care for it
like he did.
I took it upon myself
to take care of the bike.
I would feel like
I was a big man
with lots of power
the way I peddled through the wind.
This bike is now precious to me
and I will cherish it
for all the days
that I breathe.

Crystal Lee Hernandez

Who or what will save my life?
Who or what will do me right?
Maybe my friends?
Maybe my family?
Or maybe the boy
I met at the corner
who said
he gave a damn about me?
Yeah. Right!!!
The only thing
that will do me good in life
is the thing that helps me
to more than just survive.
Money can slip from the palm of your hand;
and friends will back-stab you
because most
don't give a damn.
But, my education . . .
My education
no one can take away.
For once it is given
it can never go astray.
As far as the rest
that is given in life,
without education
understanding things
will be as far fetched
as a newborn baby flying a kite.


Cherline Desir

Cherline is a beautiful young girl.
She has lovely eyes and a great
Cherline is my little sister.
I love her to death.
She makes me happy each time
I see her.
There's something special between Cherline
and me; and that is blood and mother.
We were both born in the same month.
She is my heart.
She is the reason my heart beats.
She is why I love myself and have stopped
doing bad things to girls.
Cherline is my little sister
and I love her;
and I'll die loving her.